Q. How do ‘we’ attract, motivate and retain future leaders for our communities, and religious institutions?

A. Attracting, motivating and retaining future leaders for an organization is similar to cultivating long term donors: a thoughtful stewardship program will reap the greatest rewards.

Each time you engage someone and remind him/her of your organization, you have the opportunity to capitalize on the feelings that encouraged the person to get involved with your institution in the first place. With each “touch” from your organization, provide the person with the opportunity to learn more about a new project or program that might interest him/her. Ask the person how they could see themselves becoming more involved – and be prepared with suggestions of potential volunteer positions that offer a variety of time commitments required. Listen to their response. You want to hear an affirmative response, but you also want to know the reason if it is negative. That will help tailor future conversations.

Pat yourself on the back if he or she agrees to help at any level. You will have one more volunteer and this potential future leader will establish additional relationships within the organization. The more personal the relationship with the enterprise, the more personally invested the individual will be. Follow this strategy with a number of people and, down the line, you will find you have a group involved and invested in leading your organization into the future.